Chicago-To-Germany Flight Diverted Because Of Unruly Passenger

Updated 7/9/11 6:12 p.m.

CHICAGO (WBBM)  — A special flight to Frankfurt, Germany, is finally in the air Saturday, a day after it was supposed to leave Chicago.

Some Chicagoans have quite a story to tell about the flight from O’Hare to Frankfort that was diverted Friday to Cleveland when a passenger was found hiding in the bathroom and went ballistic when he was confronted.

Joe Shulfer of Woodstock had his noise-cancelling headphones on and was sitting by himself on United Airlines Flight 944.

“The flight attendant just ran up to me and literally grabbed me by the shirt and said, ‘You need to come with me now,’” the passenger told Newsradio 780.

LISTEN: Newsradio 780’s Mike Krauser Reports

They came upon three men wrestling with another passenger who, Shulfer learned, had been in the restroom for 20 or 30 minutes and wouldn’t come out.

They handcuffed the suspicious passenger and tied up his feet, but he started spitting and swearing, Shulfer says.

“So we duct-taped his mouth shut,” he says. “He was able to get that off himself. He almost choked himself by swallowing the duct tape.”

Then they secured a surgical mask over his face “just to get him to kind of shut up and stop spitting all over everybody.”

Shulfer says he heard from United that the man had a boarding pass but wasn’t on the passenger list.

Bomb sniffing dogs were brought in but turned up nothing unusual. The plane was eventually allowed to fly back to Chicago. So far, officials have said nothing about charges. CBS 2 blurred out the suspect’s face because he has not been charged.

  • Jedediah

    No mention of name or nationality? MUST be a Muslim!

    • Chuck Varrick

      John, God bless you, you’re correct.

    • Steve

      @ Joshua Teale – You are correct that doors cannot be opened if the cabin is pressurized. I’m going to go out on a limb and guess that’s why John said to have the pilot drop down below 10,000 feet – because then you wouldn’t need a pressurized cabin. Perhaps you should look into things like this yourself, before you say something awesome.

    • Paul

      Maybe you should be doing some thinking too…. while it’s SARCASTIC to say open the door and throw him out…. 10,000 ft wouldn’t be the problem… AIRSPEED would be the problem. Cabins are pressurized to between 8 and 10,000 ft equivalency, and LOTS of people live near 10,000 (including me) in the mountains of the western US.

    • TRoD

      Perhaps YOU should learn before you speak: Below 10,000 feet, the pressure difference inside the plane and outside of the plane is insignificant and because this pressure difference is so small, the operation of the door would not be effected. The plane is essentially not “pressurized” below 10,000 feet because the outside pressure has not dropped significantly requiring pressurization. Unpressurized airplanes routinely fly above 10,000 feet all the time (they must to get over mountains). Drive to the top of any 10,000 foot mountain (Northern Cascades?) with an inflated balloon, and you will see very little difference in the size of the balloon (i.e.very little change of atmospheric pressure)from 1,000 feet to 10,000 feet.

    • Joshua Teale

      Because you can’t open an airplane door when the cabin is pressurized, buddy. Maybe you should look into things like this before you say something awesome.

      • john

        You can open the door of an aircraft if it is below 10,000 feet. They only pressurize an aircraft to an altitude of something like 8000 feet.
        Once below 10,000 feet you don’t need oxygen and you can open the doors in flight.

    • Sven

      Exactly my thoughts

  • Bonnie

    He got through the TSA, apparently, with a fake boarding pass.

    • Karen Hall

      They were busy looking into the underwear of a grandma.

      • Mo Hermit

        got on one

  • Osamas Pajamas

    If he spits, punch him real hard in the middle of his forehead a couple of times.

    • greyfox

      That would be politically incorrect and probably against the law.

      • Alex

        I think 3 or 4 times is more appropriate, not just twice. Yes, we have to be sure.

  • omstrat

    Who the f*ck is watching our airports ?
    Every time I fly I check checked out 10 times over.
    No name given must be a protected class person of Islamic origin.

    • Chuck Varrick

      No its not…its because of muslims!

    • Mr. Justice

      Have you seen most of the TSA Workers? Most of them can’t string 2 sentences together.

      • Quiet56

        It’s another branch of affirmative action. TSA hires them after they’ve been fired for incompetance as a mall cop.

      • Marv Wexler

        That’s sad but true…@Quiet56, dude that is funny!

    • himself

      Yep. It’s me. But why Madagascar. And what about the natives of that fair island. Think they want about fourteen million strangers dumped on their doorstep. don;t even speak the language. Nah, you gotta find a different location. But you really want to know what the problem is. Once we get to M. we will run the world from there. How you going to fix that.

    • Mary

      You got that right! Israeli Security know how to do it minus political correctness…

  • CONNECTICUT SSN 042-68-4425

    • Kusokurae

      Not saying it isn’t fake, just that this so-called teacher is abysmally incompetent.

      • Bubba Catts

        That OCR theory was DEBUNKED months ago!
        The FRAUD in the white house will soon be EXPOSED and put in cuffs!

        Bubba Catts
        Bossier City, La.

    • Chicago Nick

      I’m surprised you were able to get that posted there Connect…. Yup, Obama’s pulling the wool over half the country like a little Linus security blanket for all the big government loving nanny stater’s who can’t think and act for themselves.

      Nowadays Archie Bunker’s terrorist idea would work far better than the TSA brownshirt Nazi’s

  • AngryIrish

    in other words … HE WAS A MUSLIM!!!!! ONE of the many reasons I WILL NEVER FLY AGAIN!!!!

  • Karen Hall

    Some of have to fly to keep our jobs, so that doesn’t work.

  • Kenyan President


  • Fanny Forbes Franklen

    The story stinks. No information about who this person is, where they are from or anything else. Does not pass the smell test. Ergo .. be afraid and we need more intrusive security that you will be paying for with more than money.


    • Voist

      How do ‘we’ know? I see zero information about who this person is or what they actually did. If it turns out he has done nothing then a massive law suit against the airline and also each individual too. Kidnapping and assault come to mind as starters.

  • Timbuk2

    Just goes to show what a person will do to get out of that cesspool Chicago.

  • Alex Storm

    Not coming out of the bathroom allows people to wrestle you to the ground and duct tape your mouth shut (with a gag that can be choked on) ? I have on occasion needed to use the rest room for this length of time.

    Getting a boarding pass would be simple if he had gotten past security, someone may have dropped theirs. What we are not hearing is that he had anything more dangerous than constipation. Nobody who knew what or why was interviewed only the person with sound proof headphones. I seriously doubt that the airline would have (truthfully) told anyone that someone had a boarding pass and was not on “list” to fly, perhaps they forgot to check the bathroom before the last flight ?

    Was this story even confirmed by anyone other than a caller to a radio talk show who said he was there ?

    • Chicago Josh

      Alex don’t be such a sucker.
      THINK ABOUT IT PEOPLE: If they opened the door and he was in the middle of going to the bathroom, they would be embarrassed and would apologize and close the door right away. They wouldn’t have tackled him and duct taped his mouth if he was just pooping or peeing. HE WAS OBVIOUSLY DOING SOMETHING SUSPICIOUS THAT WARRANTED HIM TO BE TAKEN DOWN. The flight attendant knocked lightly on the door and the man refused to say anything or to come out, periodically. He wasn’t going to the bathroom. He was trying to do something to cause harm to the flight, or another dry run, test run, trial run, etc. You don’t tackle and duct tape someone for using the restroom. Use your head instead of putting it up your butt. Not to be mean, but seriously dude, think about it. They wouldn’t have done what they did if he was just naturally in the middle of taking care of his business.

      • Jose Canusee

        Americans are too cowardly to take such a stand. When you have too much, you appreciate nothing. Americans are too beguiled by their stupid dogs, picking up dogsh!t every day of their retirement, that they forget any purpose or meaning of their lives. In so many words, Americans have become pathetic losers.

      • chuck in st paul

        Hoser Jose @12:17 is tres funny. Teh Stupid is strong in this one.

        YO! Hoser! If your statement had ANY validity then Americans would be paddling innertube boats away from America to some paradise of your choosing. Instead people are STILL braving death to get here. QED. duh.

    • Yukiko

      Do you have a brain? If so try using it! Not pulling you head out of your rectum s also causing the constipation from which you are suffering It is also depriving what you try to pass off as a brain from oxygen. Thus negating any common sense you may have had in the past.

  • REV Wright

    A Democrat voting Moooooooooooooooooslim??


  • UA 944 landing in CLE to offload disruptive passenger - Page 2 - FlyerTalk Forums

    […]…d-disturbance/ Sounds like it was quite a battle on board. __________________ "The American Republic will endure until the day Congress discovers that it can bribe the public with the public's money" […]


    […] (Second column, 5th story, link) […]

  • Kayhla

    It’s called “false flag”
    Pay attention.
    Surrender your rights to the TSA… they are oh so effective…

  • DCassidy

    They were too busy groping nuns to have spotted anything suspicious about this character.

  • Steve

    What a dweeb. Banned book my big toe. You can buy it at Barnes & Nobles, order it online at Amazon, download it for you Kindle, whatever. Here’s the Amazon link so stop trying to sell us a bunch of baloney!

    • keep it real

      Thank you.

  • Mike Alright

    Sounds like the flight attendant assaulted the man wearing the noise cancelling head phones. Oh, that’s right, this is the US, where it is not possible for a woman to assault a man. My bad….

  • Flayer

    Dear CBS:
    Frankfurt, not Frankfort. Frankfort is in Kentucky, not Germany.
    And THESE are supposed to be the smartest people in the room?

    P.S. Who was the passenger? Just asking…

    • Kelly Hopkins

      Frankfort is also in Illinois… it’s a Chicago suburb. They probably got confused (I’m sure it happens a lot there).

  • Rupert Bumbkin

    Once again we have the enemy within( crazy Muslims) and the Democratic Party ringing their hands to try and protect the bad guys. I already have reduced my flying time by 90%. 48,000 TSA clowns can get fatter ( if that is possible) doing nothing.

  • Hal

    To the writer of this article. There in NO Frankfort in Germany. It’s FRANKFURT.

  • Linkoln

    These white, female, Catholic/Jew, Tea Party affiliated, old, angry, evil, hard working, business-owning upstarts are ALWAYS trying to blow up planes. ALWAYS. If it wasn’t for those white, female, Catholic/Jew, Tea Party affiliated, old, angry, evil, hard working, business-owning upstarts, Muslims wouldn’t be upset and have to take action.

  • Lickerface

    If the TSA merely declared: ALL MUSLIMS WILL BE SEARCHED INSIDE OUT, CORED LIKE APPLES, BEFORE FLIGHTS, we’d never hear these stories anymore. Muslim creeps would never try doing test flights and dry runs in the first place.

    • joshbot

      Wrong. Thats what they’d like you to think but in reality the primary target IS you and anyone who cares about the constitution. Remember this post, the new face of terrorism is the “radicalized american extremist.” He will be seen to be “spouting rhetoric” about The Constitution and “Conspiracy Theories” in order to paint those who do as dangerous. Google MIAC Report, and then Fabled Enemies.

    • PabloKoh

      What does a MuslimPab look like?

  • Alex

    Why didn’t the captain just continue on to Frankfurt? We’d be rid of the troublesome passenger, the airline wouldn’t have lost money on the flight and the passengers would not have been inconvenienced. I would have let the Germans handle him and forget it! It’s obvious he didn’t have any weapons after the passengers “took care of business”. He’s lucky the passengers did not give him the ultimate “coup de grace” as most travelers today would probably have done. I applaud them for their restraint.

  • Alex

    No person from any of “those countries” should be allowed to fly on any Western airline or enter the US without a very good reason after being completely vetted by our officials. These folks are a real problem and they are not rational in most cases. We should develop our own energy resources and cut all ties to such violent nations completely. Those who are suspected to be dangerous need to be sent home humanely and never allowed to return to our shores. Those of the Religion of Peace are not needed for anything. Heck, they can’t even build a bicycle!

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